Massive fraud at the EPA from agency's top paid climate official

This is stunning, yet not surprising. We know people get caught up in “the cause”, and that there are massive egos involved in some of the more visible climate advocates that lead them to irrational excesses of word and deed, but this one takes the cake.

This NBC News (coverage of the EPA internal*) investigation reveals that the highest paid individual at the EPA, John C. Beale, bilked the agency out of nearly $1 million in salary and other benefits  over a decade.

The EPA’s highest-paid employee and a leading expert on climate change deserves to go to prison for at least 30 months for lying to his bosses and saying he was a CIA spy working in Pakistan so he could avoid doing his real job, say federal prosecutors.

Beale perpetrated his fraud largely by failing to show up at the EPA for months at a time, including one 18-month stretch starting in June 2011 when he did “absolutely no work,” as Kern, Beale’s lawyer, acknowledged in his court filing.

What was he doing? Galavanting around the world first class and staying in 5 star hotels at taxpayers expense, that’s what. 

The two sentencing memos, along with documents obtained by NBC News, offer new details about what some officials describe as one of the most audacious, and creative, federal frauds they have ever encountered.

When he first began looking into Beale’s deceptions last February, “I thought, ‘Oh my God, How could this possibly have happened in this agency?” said EPA Assistant Inspector General Patrick Sullivan, who spearheaded the Beale probe, in an interview with NBC News. “I’ve worked for the government for 35 years. I’ve never seen a situation like this.”

And of course, here’s the “anything for the cause” blindness that allowed it all to happen:

Sullivan said he doubted Beale’s fraud could occur at any federal agency other than the EPA. “There’s a certain culture here at the EPA where the mission is the most important thing,” he said. “They don’t think like criminal investigators. They tend to be very trusting and accepting.”

Translation: he’s doing good work for “the cause”, so there’s no need to look further.

More here: http://investigations.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/12/16/21911592-climate-change-experts-fraud-was-crime-of-massive-proportion-say-feds?lite  (h/t to WUWT reader Martin Rettig)

While this is a massive fraud of salary and benefits, one has to wonder what sort of fraud this man may have perpetrated in his role as a climate official. According to the story,

These include helping to rewrite the Clean Air Act in 1990, heading up EPA delegations to United Nations conferences on climate change in 2000 and 2001, and helping to negotiate agreements to reduce carbon emissions with China, India and other nations.

In this EPA document, they don’t seem to be looking into any of those things, only his travel abuse. I think they have “team blinders” on since I haven’t found anything where they look into the quality of his climate work.

The culture of corruption in Washington will be the death of the republic if it isn’t reined in soon. Already our government feels like that of a third world country.

* edited for accuracy

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Betapug

Wonder if his former boss, “Richard Windsor” (aka Lisa Jackson) testified on his behalf?

Jim from Maine

Fraud? In our government?…the most transparent administration EVAH?
Truly hard to believe 😉
Jim from Maine

We had a similar, albeit “cheaper” scandal in this state several years back. An employee did not show up for work for 12 years, yet was continually paid and her supervisors even gave her evaluations. The organization was a cooperative run by the state and the feds. Community development if I remember correctly.
Any wonder we are $17 trillion in debt?

Oscar Bajner

“I’ve worked for the government for 35 years. I’ve never seen a situation like this.”
Govt Employee Chekalist:
1. Blinkers on: Check.

Its a Travesty that this scientists extremely important work is being interrupted by legal harassment…

Gibby

Boy his “bosses” must be one heck of a fool to not get agency verification on such a huge claim as that. Shoot, my wife works at the VA and has a heck of a time just trying to get more than a week off approved by her bosses and they always refuse to reimburse for any portion of conference attendances even if it is a part of maintaining certifications.

Alan the Brit

Probably as a result of arrogance! Once people believe they can get away with it, their excesses get worse the more it is overlooked! Happens in the UK too!

playing the devil’s advocate here…maybe this was the least costly outcome of his job as far as an impact on the economy goes.

Eustace Cranch

Spell check last para:
Reign: What a king or queen does
Rein: To control by a physical lead, originally in reference to draft animals
Rain: Drops keep fallin’ on my head

The [Washington] Post previously reported that in 2012, McCarthy notified the EPA general counsel’s office about her suspicions. That office, in turn, notified the EPA’s Office of Homeland Security, which has no investigative authority [Note 1], delaying the inspector general’s probe for months. Source: WaPo Dec. 10.
[Note 1] but I bet they are armed.

Glenn Dixon

Our government: dishonesty, incompetence, stupidity. Pick any three.

kim

Sic semper Tyrannis.
==============

Grandpa Simpson warned us about the EPA…

I’ve seen it go both ways with government employee waste, fraud and abuse. If they cross someone higher they get caught and dealt with relatively quickly. If they don’t, then it seems it can go on forever. I’m amazed that the IG’s “surprise” statement.
Try terminating a GS employee for cause. It only takes a year or so and you can get midnight phone calls from OPM asking if you really want to do it. The system is set so you can’t easily get rid of the abusers.

Go Home

Isn’t this old news? Or is more out about it then what was known before?

Eustace Cranch

Spelling corrected. (“rein”)

There’s a bit of perfect symmetry at work here – in an industry (climate change/global warming/whatever) that is, at its heart, a total fraud, it stand to reason that the greatest and most skilled con artists would rise to the top. Not the penny ante pikers who write papers that no one reads, but the real thing, the ponzi schemers, the “catch me if you can” manipulators like this guy.
I suspect, if we were to know the whole truth, that the only difference between this man and someone like Pachouri is that one of them has done a much better job of paying off their respective officials in their home country.
That’s really Beale’s only big mistake – he forgot to spread the wealth around enough, at least not to the “right” people.

kim

Enablers above and below him in the hierarchy. This calls for an investigation. Get the Inspector General on it. Well, someone anyway.
===========

DirkH

“Beale. JOHN Beale.”

Taphonomic

His lawyer in trying to get him leniency writes in the nbcnews.com article: “With the help of his therapist, Mr. Beale has come to recognize that, beyond the motive of greed, his theft and deception were animated by a highly self-destructive and dysfunctional need to engage in excessively reckless, risky behavior.” and also said Beale was driven “to manipulate those around him through the fabrication of grandiose narratives … that are fueled by his insecurities.”
“fabrication of grandiose narratives” that seems to fit a lot of the CAGW usual suspects.

kim

Now, Taph, you know he was working for the CIA. A small price to pay the better for us never to know.
=======

Have you ever talked to a lifetime government employee? Their mindset toward money is warped. Governments take; businesses must earn. Lifetime government employees never ever realize that when costs go up, prices go up too. Because the government takes money they do not have to work to get that money. They think you can just take more. This make corruption and waste much easier.

Steve C

Hehe. Just like the good ole UK, with its government full of scammers and troughers. Welcome to the club – and to the Third World (Futures Division).

Mary McCarthy said,
“Bureaucracy, the rule of no one, has become the modern form of despotism.”

JimS

After reading the article, I must confess, being a Canadian, I yawned. Mr. Beale was simply acting like one of our Senators in Parliament, and we have 100 of them. Ho-hum.

pokerguy

“The culture of corruption in Washington will be the death of the republic if it isn’t reined in soon. Already our government feels like that of a third world country.”
The biggest rip off of all is right in front of our noses and totally legal..which is the buying of politicians by lobbyists. I simply cannot understand how this is allowed to go on. Only solution I can think of is term limits, so that these guys are not constantly needing to raise money to run for reelection. One term and out. But that discussion seems to have gone away.

rgbatduke

Spell check last para:
Reign: What a king or queen does
Rein: To control by a physical lead, originally in reference to draft animals
Rain: Drops keep fallin’ on my head

And don’t forget
Rayne: A totally awesome hot vampire chick, dude, that goes around killing other vampires for revenge. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rayne_%28BloodRayne%29
Sorry, gotta lighten the moment. The problem is that spell checkers don’t catch well-formed homophones. So if you use two instead of to or too or tu, their is only a small chance that a fairly sophisticated grammar checker can due the job. All two often, through, they will parse the text back to the you sir with lops of errors consisting of simple substitutions or homophones in plaice. For example, this entire reply past the won in my browser.
rgb
REPLY: Thinks, I depreciate it – Anthony

” Already our government feels like that of a third world country.” Come to the UK and see what it is really like to be heading for a banana republic.

Mark Bofill

I’m with Dr. Spencer on this. This guy was probably one of the more benign parasites. Rather than soak up money to further damage our economy, he just soaked up money.

Eustace Cranch

rgb, funny! It’s also illustrative of the problems with speech-to-text software.
Sometimes I’m glad I never learned to touch-type; my fingers won’t automatically type the wrong word. I have to think about, and peck out, almost every word.

Greg

From the freebeacon link: “Beale is scheduled to be sentenced in federal court on Dec. 18. He has agreed to pay more than $1 million in restitution and civil forfeitures as part of his plea deal.”
Perhaps the next question is , having blown all this money on travel and hotels where is he going to get the $1 million to pay in restitution ? Did he have this massive fortune before he became a public employee?
Perhaps the feds should be looking deeper into his lifestyle expenditure and declared income sources.

Hey, if Chuck Barris of Gong Show infamy can be a CIA hitman, why not this EPA schmuck?
for the sardonically challenged: /SARC
The EPA should be “gonged”.

Should have attended the AGU legal defense presentation.

Oops, mistake in link; here it is: Chuck Barris, CIA hitman
I need more coffee.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7

Well now we know just how much care the EPA puts into vetting studies purporting to support global warming.
If Beale were a judge, prosecutor or criminal investigator tied to this kind of deception, potentially every conviction in which he participated would be open to appeal on grounds of prosecutorial misconduct. I don’t know if the same principle applies to regulatory law, but it would be interesting if it did. The presumption in administrative law is when government officials present materials, evidence, findings, etc., to the courts that they are being truthful.
With Beale you have a documented case of a senior EPA official who repeatedly lied to his own agency for years and therefore the presumption of truthfulness cannot be granted to any submission made or signed by Beale over the same period. In any instance where Beale’s submissions were materially relevant to a regulatory decision, that decision should be reviewed.
It won’t happen of course (ample precedents set by MBH hockey-stickery), but it should.

Mike Maguire

His defense attorney is using the fact that he is a psychopath as a defense:
“The Disturbing Link Between Psychopathy And Leadership”
http://www.forbes.com/sites/victorlipman/2013/04/25/the-disturbing-link-between-psychopathy-and-leadership/
Traits of a psychopath(not all of them have every trait)
http://psychopathyawareness.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/the-list-of-psychopathy-symptoms/
I found this to be a very enlightening book on the subjext::
“Without Conscience” by Robert Hare.

Theo Goodwin

I am at a loss for words. Or maybe the stink is too great and I have to run away. As we knew from the day that the “Green Jobs Czar” was appointed, Global Warming advocates have been awash in money. As rivers of money grow, the number of pirates who work the river grows indefinitely large. The waste and fraud in government today surely must be at a record level. I just hope that the defendant’s attorney subpoenaed Richard Windsor’s emails. At least the emails will be collected somewhere.

Louis

It took them years to figure out that he didn’t really work for the CIA. How long will it take them to figure out that he’s not really a climate change expert either?

Eliza

WEll it looks like mainstream PRAVDA has awakened to the AGW scam
http://english.pravda.ru/science/earth/18-11-2013/126171-global_warming_fraud-0/

johnbuk

Mike Maguire “His defense attorney is using the fact that he is a psychopath as a defense:”
Perhaps we can look forward to Lew entering the fray on his behalf – there’s probably a very long word that describes his behaviour that should explain away the whole thing – to at least 97% of the jury.

Dodgy Geezer

…including one 18-month stretch starting in June 2011 when he did “absolutely no work,” as Kern, Beale’s lawyer, acknowledged…
Why should he NEED to do any work? The science is settled…

Neo

I’m not sure which is worse: doing “absolutely no work” or actually working.
You have to ask .. how many more like him are there in the government ?

Oatley

When will it be that we demand that the EPA outline the scientific case for their CO2 endangerment filing? The Supreme Court did not rule on the scientific evidence, but deferred that question to the agency for their judgment. To my knowledge, they simply proclaimed it without producing analysis or evidence.

johnbuk

Dodgy Geezer – “Why should he NEED to do any work? The science is settled…”
Yes we know that but the communication strategy still needs refining – I mean, if it’s so obvious it must be a bugger to communicate it to the plebs.

TAG

Anyone who has worked in private industry is quite familiar with how well executives live on the company’s dime. There may be massive layoffs but the private jet is always going to be well stocked with food and drink. It is not only government that has problems like this

Chip Knappenberger

Hmmm. Maybe Roy Spencer has a point. It seems while active at the EPA, Mr. Beale was pivotal in covering up critique of (extremely costly) EPA regulations from other government agencies.
http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/1997/07/can-no-one-stop-the-epa
-Chip

Gerry

If you like your fraud, you can keep your fraud.

Rob Ricket

Beale’s wife, Dr. Nancy Kete (a climate crusader in her own right) is every bit as guilty as he is, unless we are to believe that Beale took all those lavish “CIA” trips on his own.
http://reclaimourrepublic.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/john-c-beale-and-a-nancy-kete-and-a-million-dollar-fraud-scheme/

Dodgy Geezer

@johnbuk
Dodgy Geezer – “Why should he NEED to do any work? The science is settled…”
Yes we know that but the communication strategy still needs refining – I mean, if it’s so obvious it must be a bugger to communicate it to the plebs.

And that’s what he was doing. Long ‘strategy refining’ sessions. On the beach, in the bar…. does this man never stop working for the good of his fellow man.. ?

So “..the highest paid individual at the EPA..John C. Beale..a leading expert on climate change”
Do they mean – a leading expert on fandangling with the UNIPCC ?
What lunatic asylum are we descending into.
Or would most asylums be occupied with more productive people ?